No it isn’t! Why do I say that? Well just google Dika Toua and see her statistics: and those of many other weightlifters as well. They speak for themselves and will show you that you don’t have to be tall and big to be able to lift up to 95kg in the clean and jerk, and so on.
Dika Toua, a name that will be remembered for centuries to come, not just in PNG but in the Olympics and most importantly weightlifting history. At the tender age of 16 and still in high school, Dika represented her country, Papua New Guinea, at the Sydney 2000 Olympics. It was the first year for female weightlifting at the games and Dika made history as the first woman ever to lift at the Olympics.
Fast forward 21 years, in Tokyo, on Saturday 24.07.2021, she competed in the 49kg division, finishing 4th in her pool (10th overall) with a total lift of 167kg. And she set another Olympic record – the first woman lifter to compete at five (5) Olympics: only three men have ever done that. It could’ve been her 6th if she hadn’t missed Rio Olympics for personal reasons.
Has it all been about weightlifting for her? No!! Because in between setting these two Olympics and many other national and Oceania records – Dika is married and raising two beautiful children with lots of help from her supportive husband, parents and relatives. When asked why she had formed the heart sign at the end of her lift in Tokyo – she said it was for her children. What a legend! What a hero! ❤
A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.Christopher Reeve
Strength comes from within, it is a culmination of will, self discipline and control, knowing your own strengths and weaknesses and working on them to your advantage. So even if you have the best trainer in the world or access to world class facilities, lots of internal and external support in the form of family and friends, but you lack confidence and belief in yourself, I really don’t think you can progress further in whatever it is you pursue.
When I spoke to Dika at a chance meeting in Sydney a few years back – I was amazed at her strength, not just physically but mentally and emotionally as well. She shared stories of her journey as an athlete, the struggles she experienced as a young motuan woman, a mother leaving her babies behind for training and competition for months and many more experiences. And she shared with confidence her plans to get ready for Tokyo 2020.
She inspired me then, and her taking the stage at Tokyo 2020 in July 2021 – confirms for me that strength is definitely from within. It’s God given and you only have to look within yourself to identify it.
Philippians 4:13 NIV
I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
I hope one day to see Dika lift, God willing – wherever that may be. If I don’t, I’m so honored to have met, spoken, sang songs and laughed with her. For me, Dika is the epitome of strength from the heart: small in stature – she has never weighed more than 53kg in her life – but big at heart.
May God continue to bless & protect Dika and all her loved ones as they journey on beyond Tokyo 2020 🙏🇵🇬❤
I wrote the above so many months ago. But then life happened and couldn’t find a suitable time to publish it. And just as it’s written in Ecclesiastes 3, everything under the sun happens for a reason.
I recently read and saw on Facebook that Dika had completed her training and graduated as a Reserve Police. Woww!! What can this woman not do.
This reiterates for me that strength comes from within; knowing who you are and bringing your best to wherever God places you – be it, being a mother, a wife, an Olympian, a Reserve Police, and so on. Keep it simple, just be YOU, let go and let God.
Well done Dika ❤🙏
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV